Tonight featured my dream challenge on Master Chef because the home cooks were charged with cooking one of my all time favourite things - T Bone steaks.
And even though there were a variety of different dishes - including dessert from Becky - the judges chose the three top dishes that they wanted to taste: Frank's T Bone with Grilled Corn and Cabbage Slaw, Tanya's Tarragon T Bone Steak, and Becky with her Peaches and Cream Puree.
Of the three, the winner was Tanya and I couldn't have been happier as it's nice to see her beginning to come to her own in the Master Chef kitchen.
The theme for today's elimination challenge was "Our favourite dessert" and Tanya, who was exempt, got a huge advantage because she had the power to choose teams of four contestants each to prepare Tiramisu, Strawberry Shortcake, and British Trifle. The teams would then cook off against each other and one least favourite dish from each would be declared by the judges. From those three dishes, one home cook would be asked to go home.
This was an opportunity for Tanya to be strategic about who would be competing with who - and what dessert they would be given!
She chose Stacy, Becky, Monte, and Josh, to prepare the trifle; Scott, Mike, Christine, and Tali were on strawberry shortcake, while Frank, David, Felix and Anna prepared the tiramisu - which turned out to be the Waterloo for Felix who made hers free form and added macadamia nuts.
Ditto for Stacy on trifle who got a little show offy, adding all kinds of unusual seasonings to, what is supposed to be, a classic dish - people, you don't fool with the British.
That is, unless you're Becky - who has a little side feud on the go with Stacy, and as if to say, "Take that beeyotch!" - Becky Italianed up her trifle with a little Balsamic vinegar and was declared by Chef Ramsay as the challenge winner.
Not so much for Mike who was also on the bottom for some dry looking shortcakes and as the three cooks responsible for the judges least favourite desserts made their way to the front of the room, I felt badly for them. It's always hard to leave a competition, but the longer you are in it, the more invested you become. Both Monte and Stacy were visibly crushed and it seemed that either of the two was convinced she was going home.
In the end, this wasn't the case. Though we were led to believe that Monte would be going home, today was Mike's time to leave the kitchen and I thought he was amazingly gracious and wise in his "goodbye clip." He was able to see all of the good things he learned from the experience and is going to take this things forward as he continues his cooking journeys.
If today's challenge got you thinking about desserts, you HAVE to try this recipe from my friend Jeanine Friesen at The Beauties for Pina Colada Parfaits - it is one of my favourite summer desserts!
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